Goats galore - Acclaimed radio host raises prize-winning goats in rural Shell Rock

Pat Blank visits with her goats. “[Raising goats] teaches responsibility. … The kids … understand the goats won’t be fed unless you feed them. They won’t be warm unless you make sure the barn has a hay or straw bed. They need water every day…” Blank said. “If it’s cold you need to make sure the bucket isn’t frozen. You have to take these steps to make sure things are as they need to be. They depend on you.” (Bethany Carson photo)

No kidding: February is coming, and with it, kidding season—the busiest time of year for goat farmers.

     Pat Blank of rural Shell Rock, award-winning host of Iowa Public Radio’s All Things Considered, has her work cut out presenting a mix of the day’s news, analysis, commentary and coverage of art and sports on the radio. But the day’s work doesn’t start when she walks into the studio—or even when she walks into the classroom where she teaches newswriting as an adjunct instructor at UNI. She’s also a goat farmer. Her day starts in the barn at the Black Eagle Ranch where she raises Nigerian Dwarf Goats.

     As a registered breeder with the Iowa Diary Goat Association, she sells a majority of her goats for 4-H projects. She also participates in the Iowa Dairy Goat Association’s Share-a-Kid program, where producers donate a doeling to 4-H or FFA youth otherwise unable to afford a registered animal.

            Colorful Nigerian Dwarfs are the smallest of dairy goats. 

 

Read more in the January 10 edition of the STAR.

 

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